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Wednesday, May 12, 2021
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Takeover of Gang Gang Café a family affair

The beloved Gang Gang Café and Bar may have new owners, but there certainly won’t be a lack of familiar faces.

Brothers Sam, Riley and Max Conway, the latter two of whom have worked at Gang Gang for some time, have taken over the popular café at Downer shops.

They have just announced a residency with Undine Records that will see four live gigs take place at the café throughout November and December and are hoping to put together music nights for lovers of jazz, classical and other genres.

The trio, who make up three quarters of local band Slow Turismo, said while the opportunity to take over the café presented itself during a tricky time – a global pandemic – they decided to go for it.

“We obviously were all fond of the place and had ideas going about what we’d do with it, but never really thought we’d take it over,” says Riley.

“We first considered it not very seriously and then it very quickly turned into quite serious [consideration].”

The trio make up three quarters of local band Slow Turismo, and have plans to bring in live music, recently announcing a residency with Undine Records for November and December.

The Conway brothers are inner north locals, and Sam says the Downer community jumped in to support them while they transitioned into ownership.

“At first we were worried about making changes, but so far everyone has been really supportive and they seem really happy for us to try things and it definitely takes a lot of the pressure off… we’re definitely not taking it for granted, though.”

The café has just released its new spring menu from new head chef Rory McLeod, which features his fresh take on café favourites like baked eggs and smashed avo.

As well, the trio are hoping to take the café in a more sustainable direction, working to set up a composting system and using local suppliers.

On top of taking over Gang Gang, the Conway brothers are also working on new music with band Slow Turismo, recently receiving an artsACT grant to record their debut album in what Max describes as “the busiest time of our lives”.

Visit Gang Gang Café and Bar at Downer Shops, Frencham Place, Downer. Open 7am-5pm Monday to Sunday, and 5pm – late Friday and Saturday.

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